Tuesday, February 27, 2007


Asta (born Skippy) was a Wire-Haired Fox Terrier best known for his acting work in the 1934 screwball comedy The Thin Man. He was trained by Frank Weatherwax and owner Henry East. He later appeared in The Awful Truth (as Mr. Smith), Bringing Up Baby (as George, the bone-hiding pup of Katharine Hepburn), and Topper Takes A Trip (as Mr. Atlas). Due to the enormous popularity of Asta, interest in pet terriers skyrocketed.

As a character in the movie The Thin Man, Asta was the playful pet dog of Nick and Nora Charles, tugging them around town on his walks, hiding from danger, and sniffing out dead corpses. The character later appeared in the sequels After the Thin Man, Another Thin Man, Shadow of the Thin Man, The Thin Man Goes Home, Song of the Thin Man, as well as the 1950s television show The Thin Man. Although Skippy played Asta in the original film, it is believed multiple terriers were used for the sequels, and he wasn't involved in the television show.

Interestingly, the original character of Asta in Dashiell Hammett's book of the The Thin Man was not a Wire-Haired Fox Terrier, but a Schnauzer.

Asta has his own fansite Visit http://www.iloveasta.com/

Monday, February 26, 2007

It was a very good year

1939 is undoubtedly the most celebrated year in American film history - the year produced more outstanding films than any other 12-month period. It was bound to be difficult for the Academy to nominate or honor all the rich, outstanding films of the year.

All the Best Picture nominated films were exceptional and unforgettable:

  • director Edmund Goulding's Dark Victory (with three nominations and no wins) about a young heiress who is slowly dying of a brain tumor and ultimately accepts her death in noble fashion
  • director Sam Wood's Goodbye, Mr. Chips (with seven nominations and one win - Best Actor), a version of James Hilton's novel about a beloved Latin teacher/schoolmaster at an English public school (the Brookfield School for Boys)
  • director Leo McCarey's tearjerker Love Affair (with five nominations and no wins) - that he later remade as An Affair to Remember (1957) - about two lovers who promise to meet atop the Empire State Building
  • director Ernst Lubitsch's delightful romantic comedy Ninotchka (with four nominations and no wins) about a cold Soviet official sent to Paris
  • director Lewis Milestone's adaptation of the classic John Steinbeck tragedy Of Mice and Men (with five nominations and no wins)
  • director John Ford's version of Ernest Haycox's story Stage to Lordsburg, Stagecoach (with seven nominations and two wins - Best Supporting Actor and Best Score) - the director's first film with star John Wayne - about a stagecoach journey by a varied group of characters
  • director Victor Fleming's perennial favorite - the beloved fantasy film about a Kansas farm girl who journeys to a brightly colored world in The Wizard of Oz (with six nominations and only two wins - Best Song Over the Rainbow (almost cut from the film by MGM executives) and Best Original Score)
  • director William Wyler's best film version of Emily Bronte's romantic novel about doomed lovers in Wuthering Heights (with eight nominations and only one win - Best Black and White Cinematography by Gregg Toland)
  • director Frank Capra's film Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (with eleven nominations and only one win - Best Original story) of Lewis Foster's story about a naive and innocent junior Senator

More oscar

There's a lot of Press Room clip and behind the scene of this year Academy award at Oscar.com

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Did you Know??

In 1946, although an Oscar nominee for Best Actress (Mildred Pierce), Joan was not present at the ceremony. She was at home in bed with the flu and a bottle of Jack Daniels bourbon. She listened to the show over the radio. When she was announced the winner, she exhaled with a scream that alerted the newsmen on the lawn below her window that she had won. Jumping out of bed, the ailing star then called for her hairdresser and makeup man, on call in the next room.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Did you know???

  • Meryl Streep forgot her trophy in the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion bathroom after her first win for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for "Kramer vs. Kramer" in 1980.
  • Charlie Chaplin's "Limelight," made in 1952, wasn't eligible for an Oscar until it was released in Los Angeles in 1972. Chaplin won a statue for Best Music, Original Dramatic Score in 1973.
  • Ventriloquist Edgar Bergen received a carved wooden Oscar, presented in honor of his dummy, Charlie McCarthy.
  • George Bernard Shaw is the only person to win an Oscar and a Nobel Prize.

Oscar odds

Which Oscar contenders are safe bets? Who should you place your money on?

"Babel" 2/1
"The Departed" 8/5
"The Queen" 50/1
"Little Miss Sunshine" 3/2
"Letters From Iwo Jima" 15/1

Forest Whitaker, "The Last King of Scotland" 4/5
Ryan Gosling, "Half Nelson" 100/1
Peter O'Toole, "Venus" Even
Will Smith, "The Pursuit of Happyness" 50/1
Leonardo DiCaprio, "Blood Diamond" 10/1

Helen Mirren, "The Queen" 1/9
Judi Dench, "Notes on a Scandal" 10/1
Kate Winslet, "Little Children" 12/1
Penelope Cruz, "Volver" 50/1
Meryl Streep, "The Devil Wears Prada" 8/1

Eddie Murphy, "Dreamgirls" 4/5
Alan Arkin, "Little Miss Sunshine" Even
Jackie Earle Haley, "Little Children" 20/1
Mark Wahlberg, "The Departed" 30/1
Djimon Hounsou, "Blood Diamond" 40/1

Jennifer Hudson, "Dreamgirls" 7/5
Abigail Breslin, "Little Miss Sunshine" 2/1
Adriana Barraza, "Babel" 5/2
Cate Blanchett "Notes on a Scandal" 20/1
Rinko Kikuchi, "Babel" 40/1

Martin Scorsese, "The Departed" 3/5
Clint Eastwood, "Letters From Iwo Jima" 6/5
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, "Babel" 15/1
Stephen Frears, "The Queen" 40/1
Paul Greengrass, "United 93"

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Guess what?? I'm masculine

You Are 57% Feminine, 43% Masculine

You are in touch with both your feminine and masculine sides.
You're sensitive at the right times, but you don't let your emotions overwhelm you.
You're not a eunuch, just the best of both genders.

Monday, February 19, 2007

The Heiress is on DVD

One of my Favorite movie is now available on DVD
The Heiress [DVD] (1949)
Olivia de Havilland won an Oscar for her portrayal of a plain spinster romanced by a handsome but poor young man (Montgomery Clift) her emotionally abusive father believes to be an unscrupulous fortune hunter eyeing the money de Havilland inherited after her mother died. William Wyler's adaptation of Henry James' novel "Washington Square" also stars Ralph Richardson, Miriam Hopkins.

Academy Award®
Winner: Best Actress (Olivia de Havilland), Best Interior Decoration (B&W), Best Score (Drama or Comedy), Best Costume Design (B&W)
Nominee: Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor (Ralph Richardson), Best Director (William Wyler), Best Cinematography (Black and White)

Friday, February 09, 2007

The rains Came (1939)

It's been raining here in San Francisco for a couple days. I can't help but thinking about a movie that I really like. The rains Came (1939) Staring Tyrone Power , Myrna Loy and George Brent. Indian aristocrat Tyrone Power returns to his home province after studying medicine in America to help the needy and sick, and becomes romantically involved with married English socialite Myrna Loy. The couple finds their love and courage tested when an earthquake and flood devastate the area and a subsequent malaria epidemic threatens all,

Set at the beginning of monsoon season in the fictitious state of Ranchipur, India, The Rains Came is filled with sahibs, memsahibs, Indian royalty, servants in turbans, high-caste Indians in saris and tuxedos, elephants, monkeys, British Empire dignitaries, and American missionaries.

The Rains Came released during one of the richest years in cinematic history (ten 1939 films got Best Picture nominations), is best-remembered for its spectacular special effects, Nominated for five academy award including Best Cinematography (Black and White), Best Art Direction--Set Decoration, Best Sound, Best Original Score, Best Editing and won f0r Best Special Effects ( beat out both Gone with the Wind and The Wizard of Oz for the Oscar.)

Take a look at the earthquake clip here and see how special effect still impressive .

Did you know??

  • Initially budgeted at $2,500,000, an additional $100,000 was added to film a new ending. $500,000 was allotted for the sets, and $500,000 for the flood and earthquake scenes. 350 grips, carpenters and laborers worked for more than a month on those scenes.

  • To create the flood effects, a 50,000-gallon tank of water was built on a studio sound stage.

  • Bert Glennon started the movie as director of photography, but became ill and was replaced by Arthur C. Miller, who received the onscreen credit.

  • Modern sources list Harry Revel as co-writer of the title song; however, he is not listed on the published sheet music or in the ASCAP database for the song.

  • This movie was a monumental undertaking for the studio. Of the 100 shooting days, almost half were spent filming the man-made rain and floods, for which 33 million gallons of water were used.

  • The Ranchipur of novelist Louis Bromfield was built on 18 acres of the back lot. The maharajah's palace, which was wrecked room by room in the earthquake, cost $75,000. The breaking of the dam was shot in two nights using 14 cameras.

  • The studio had difficulty finding enough light-gray, black-faced monkeys for the shoot, so the makeup artists actually made up more common-looking monkeys to "fit the part".

  • The first movie to win an Oscar for Best Visual Effects.

Monday, February 05, 2007

More of this year Oscar Fact.

  • In the acting categories, ten individuals are first-time nominees. The other ten share a total of 49 nominations. Three (Meryl Streep, Judi Dench and Cate Blanchett) are previous Oscar® winners.

  • Leading Actress nominee Judi Dench is the only performer who was also nominated last year (for Mrs. Henderson Presents)
  • Penelope Cruz and Rinko Kikuchi are both nominated for foreign-language performances. Four performers have won Academy Awards for roles using spoken languages
  • Should Letters from Iwo Jima win Best Picture, it would be the first foreign-language film to win in the category. The seven previous foreign-language Best Picture nominees were Grand Illusion (1938), Z (1969), The Emigrants (1972), Cries and Whispers (1973), The Postman (Il Postino) (1995), Life Is Beautiful (1998) and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000).

Friday, February 02, 2007

Oscar curse

Gig Young was a career supporting player who won an Oscar late in his career for the 1969 film They Shoot Horses, Don't They? He took the stage name Gig Young after playing a character by that name in the movie The Gay Sisters (1942). After serving in World War II, Gig became a reliable supporting player in the movies, earning Oscar nominations for Come Fill The Cup (1951) and Teacher's Pet (1958). Young had alcohol and marital problems, and his career began to wane in the 1960s, but he rallied to win the best supporting actor Oscar as an abrasive dance marathon emcee in They Shoot Horses, Don't They? (with Jane Fonda).

Young is considered the ultimate victim of the Oscar curse, so-called because many Academy Award winners have seen their careers decline or reach a dead-end after winning the ultimate accolade from their peers. According to his fourth wife, Elaine , "What he was aching for, as he walked up to collect his Oscar, was a role in his own movie -- one that they could finally call a Gig Young movie." Young was shattered when that opportunity did not materialise. "For Gig, the Oscar was literally the kiss of death, the end of the line," according to Williams. He himself said to Louella Parsons after failing to win in 1951 that "So many people who have been nominated for an Oscar have had bad luck afterwards."

On 27 September 1978, aged 64, he married his fifth wife, a 31 year-old German art gallery employee named Kim Schmidt. On 19 October 1978, three weeks after their marriage, they were both found dead at home with gunshot wounds to the head in their New York City apartment. Police theorize that Young first shot his wife and then turned the gun on himself in a suicide pact..

Extra credit: Among Young's five wives was actress Elizabeth Montgomery, star of TV's Bewitched; they were married from 1956-63... Young was originally cast as the lead in Blazing Saddles, but was replaced by Gene Wilder.

The culture of fashion 101:

"Listen, Mary, just because you're wearing those Joan Crawford Come Fuck Me Pumps, you still ain't no movie star!"

What is "Joan Crawford Come Fuck Me Pumps"???????

  • high heeled, ankle strapped woman's shoes circa 1940s causing one to walk in a pronounced, seductive, strutting motion, made popular by actress Joan Crawford
  • high-heeled pumps with a three inch or higher stilleto heel. Usually some really bright colour to get your attention. Maybe shiny vinyl or glittery.Accentuates the leg.Not usually removed during sex.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

staircase (1969)

when Julius Caesar and Marc Antony fighting to be a Queen..

Charlie (Harrison) and Harry (Burton) have been roommates, business partners and intimates for many long years, and their convoluted mutual dependency is every bit as complicated as that between any aged but incompatible couple who have grown used to one another over the years.

Did you know??

Elizabeth Taylor was shooting The Only Game in Town (1970) at the same time as working on this production. That film is set in Las Vegas, but Taylor demanded that director George Stevens shoot it in France so she could be close to her lover, Richard Burton, who was filming Staircase (1969) in France with director Stanley Donen. The budget of Only Game in Town, The (1970) grew higher than most large-scale, high-profile films that Fox was producing at the time. Ironically, the production of Staircase (1969) was moved to France to save money


Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? is part of The Jayne Mansfield Cinema Classics Collection , three off-beat films that once again put a spotlight on one of Hollywood's loveliest starlets. The three films also include The Girl Can't Help It , and The Sheriff of Fractured Jaw.

Suicide note.

"Dear World, I am leaving you because I am bored. I feel I have lived long enough. I am leaving you with your worries in this sweet cesspool - good luck."

~~ George Sanders, British actor, d. April 25, 1972